Our Green City: San Francisco’s Eco-Revolution

Golden Gate BridgeIn the 2015 Travelers’ Favorites Awards, Gogobot.com named San Francisco the number three destination in the United States and the number five destination in the world. However, San Francisco is more than just a beautiful place to visit – it is one of the greenest cities in North America. It is considered a global powerhouse on the eco-scene. In terms of cleaning up the environment, San Francisco is leading the way when it comes to proper disposal of waste, eco-friendly buildings, air quality, carbon emissions, transportation, and land use.

A record-breaking 77 percent of its municipal waste is recycled. There are mandates concerning composting and it has the largest public-transportation network in the U.S. Since 2009, residential and commercial properties are required to have water-efficient plumbing fixtures. It is estimated that by 2017, San Francisco will have saved the city up to four million gallons of water daily by simply offering free low-flow showerheads, faucet aerators, and rebates on toilet replacements. 13.8 out of every 10,000 homes rely on solar energy, a number that doubles the national average. More than 1,000 hotels are ranked as eco-friendly.

San Francisco was not only the very first American city to prohibit the use of plastic bags; but they also implemented the use of reusable totes, compostable bags, and bags made from recycled material. Due to this initiative, San Francisco has admirably diverted more than 1.6 million tons of waste from its landfills annually. To give you an idea of how impressive this is – 1.6 million tons equates to more than double the weight of the Golden Gate Bridge. Events hosted by the City of San Francisco do not allow sales of plastic water bottles.

In December 2014, President Barack Obama recognized San Francisco as a Climate Action Champion due to the city’s unwavering devotion and leadership concerning climate change initiatives. San Francisco has set aggressive goals which not only have reduced carbon pollution, but have saved the city and their residents’ money in the process. As far back as 2010, San Francisco’s greenhouse gas emissions were 14.5 percent below 1990 levels. It is predicted that by 2017, the city will have reduced their emissions by a further 25 percent and a whopping 25 percent reduction is expected by 2025.

San Francisco has been able to achieve this by creating legislature like the Green Taxi Law, which forced cab companies to reduce their greenhouse-gas emissions to below 1990 levels by 2012. More than 60% of the city’s taxis run on alternative fuel. The city’s buses are even powered by biodiesel fuel. In addition to this, those employed by the city are required to buy the most fuel-efficient, environmentally friendly automobiles when upgrading public service vehicles.

In April 2013, Walk Score, the leading analysts of travel data, awarded San Francisco second place on the list, “Top 10 US Cities to Travel Car-Free.” In fact, more than 43,000 Bay Area residents use a bicycle as their primary means of commuting to work every day. More than one-tenth of the city’s commuters walk to work.

Reduce Carbon FootprintSan Francisco is setting a stellar example for the rest of the world. It has earned its reputation by actively participating in the initiative to reduce their carbon footprint, fighting climate change and creating innovative strategies to protect our precious environment. The San Francisco Bay Area has more than 580 philanthropies dedicated to promoting a greener lifestyle which will help sustain our natural resources and help lay the groundwork for future generations to follow in their significantly-reduced carbon footprints. San Francisco has made it a goal to be completely waste-free by the year 2020 and they are well on their way to achieving this.

At AAA Business Supplies & Interiors, we are proud to be a certified green company, since 2009, doing our part to make the City a little more environmentally friendly. Learn about our environmental policy and how you can do your part to help make the City a greener place.